Big Life Change sounds so sexy. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
We love stories where people experience something (death, heartbreak, losing everything, etc) that rocks their world, reminding them of who they are and what their priorities are.
That’s when they decide to take drastic action to change their lives. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
They quit the soul-sucking job. They leave the unsatisfying relationship. They buy the round-the-world ticket. They take a massive risk and move past their fears to find out if they are made of the stuff they desperately hope they are. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
It’s hard not to fall in love with stories like that. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
But I have a problem with the way we tell those kinds of stories.
You know those positive vibe, aspirational quotes you see everywhere? ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Hustle hard. Your only limit is you. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
You know, those faux motivational quotes that imply you’re just not working hard enough, that you don’t understand your “why” (whatever the fuck that means) and that obviously you’re not successful because you are the only thing controlling your destiny?
While the web is swimming in self-help gurus who will tell you it’s fear or the wrong mindset (read: white libertarianism parading around as “The Secret” styled positive thinking), the truth is much more nuanced and complex than that. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
We hear these messages that tell us to simply pull ourselves up by our bootstraps ala the American Dream, and then we struggle with the very real effects of systematic injustice, generational poverty, mental illness, and so much more.
The fact is, we can’t all Eat Pray Love our way out of a funk or go Wild and hike the Pacific Crest Trail. Chances are, you have very real responsibilities (kids, family, bills, etc.) that prevent you from jumping on a plane and quitting your life. Even if you wanted to drop everything and start over, you couldn’t. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
I’ll explain more in my next missive – for now, I want to introduce you to your first tiny challenge – to think of one tiny step you can take towards the life you want.